Out and About:
We LOVE plays, musicals and orchestras. This month there was:
Miss Nelson is Missing with audience participation of dancing and singing. Then, Nutty Nutcracker which included a back stage tour :). And we can't forget the afternoon with the philharmonic orchestra I mentioned a couple weeks ago where holiday music rang in the season. I would be lying if I said the kids sat still through the whole concert and listened with full attention... naaah. They happily played with their imaginations, collected acorns, and entertained a 2 year old nearby...
We went back to the Avian Reconditioning Center for Owl Fest last month. We saw our favorite owls: the Great Horned owl, the Barn owl, Barred owl, and the Screech owl. Of course there were falcons and Bald eagles as well. This time we actually watched a Peregrine Falcon demonstration as he hunted for a pigeon wing. It was amazing...
|and then here's the Lego land in our home|
In case you are curious about what kids learn from Lego, take a look here. This month we revisited simple machines with gears, levers, and pulleys, problem solving, math, just to name a few. Lego is for all ages and gender doesn't matter. I even have Lego on my wish list this year for a Volkswagon Camper Van.... 'nuf said about Lego I think :)...
What was new and what continued:
In November we started a new weekly park playdate with new and old friends. I had mentioned also that we added a wonderful new co-op once a week where there is art, science and music.
While the boy thrived in this co-op learning about gravity, acceleration and making egg drop cages, discussing molecules, dry ice, principles of solids, liquids and gases, and music history, the girl was found doing her own science wading in the creek nearby, catching fish, creating dams, and leading the other sprouting bioligists to do the same.
Space: Pop Up Facts and Letters To Freedom: The American Revolution. We finished White Fang and started The Time Machine. They LOVE these series, and always ask for more. And speaking of reading, M. zipped through the Innovative Kids Now I'm Reading books Level 2 and E. read various materials from instructions booklets and video game manuals to tidbits on history and science.
We have continued homeschool P.E. once a week where there are friendly social games like sharks and minnows and island hopper, plus obstacle courses and sports. E. continued his tennis lessons, but now we have added more days. It's so exciting to see his passion for this sport grow. We went on hikes, we continued our games with apps and on the computer with Teach Me First Grade, Brain Pop Jr, Math Ninja, Montessori Crosswords, and IXL to name a few. E. has discovered equations and asked me to write him simple math problems like (157 - 39) x 4, and M. learned to skip count and is trying to tell time. She also continued her daily dress-ups, regardless of where we go and her weekly shows at home. E. and I played our games such as Scrabble and Pente, completed a 300 pc. puzzle, and he put on M.'s training wheels for her bike by himself. M. has now found courage again to go bike riding after a major spill last year, thanks to her brother :).
Trying to recall our countless conversations is my hardest task. They have ranged from what the universe and the galaxy is made of, to the earth's rotations, to some of how our body changes during puberty (aiyaiyai), to what happens in digestion, to the history of Thanksgiving and how to dress a turkey, to who is Queen Elizabeth, to why a quarter falls faster than a heavy rock (checkout this cool video of Apollo 15), to religion and spirituality....I know there is more but that's all I can recount for now.
And maybe that is the most difficult part of unschooling, the lack of measurement and listing of "learned" skills. Yet they show me on a daily basis how they are growing, changing, and learning. I could spend my days writing it all down, and I do try sometimes. But I think I'd rather live how they learn rather than try to memorize it, that's what photos are for right? I know this will have to change as they get older as someone somewhere will want a record or "proof" of some sort. Personally, I know the kids will speak for themselves :).